Mitoyo

Mitoyo City (三豊市)

Map of Kagawa
Image Unavailable
Mitoyo is the furthest East part of Kagawa

Mitoyo City is located on the west side of Kagawa. It is a collection of seven townships: Mino, Nio, Saita, Takase, Takuma, Toyonaka and Yamamoto. Although Mitoyo is called a “City” it operates more like what many non-Japanese would consider to be a “county.” Each of the seven towns have their own specialties which are described below.

To see photos of everything mentioned in this page, please visit: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10200912623816509.1073741841.1792766325&type=1&l=237d4852fc

Mino Town (三野町)
Cosmos: Fallow fields are planted with cosmos to brighten up the countryside. Sometimes farmers plough a maze through the 100+cm high flowers for kindergarteners to play in.
Fureai Park: This country park features an outdoor stage where Noh dramas are occasionally performed. It also has a museum connected to the ancient roof-tile kilns in the same area.

Nio Town (仁尾町)
Dragon Festival: In the summer, the town parades a giant straw dragon down the main streets while spectators thrown buckets of water on it, the carriers, and each other. The dragon is said to bring the rain for the coming growing season.
Mikan: A very popular kind of orange, mikan are grown extensively on the mountainsides.
Diorama Festival: An unusual festival where people open their houses to display dramatics scenes from history, legend and (occasionally) popular TV shows.

Saita Town (財田町)
Onsen: Tamaki no Yu (環の湯) is a popular and luxurious onsen located in Saita.

Takase Town
Image Unavailable
Famous for it's green tea.

Takase Town (高瀬町)
Tea: Takase is well-known for growing excellent green tea. In the nearby hills, the kanji “茶” (tea) appears on the hillside, made entirely of tea plants.

Takuma Town (詫間町)
Urashimataro: Takase is the location of the famous Japanese fairy tale, Urashimataro. You will see a lot of references to the story in town such as statues of Urashimataro throughout town and streetlamps shaped to look like the palace under the sea.

Toyonaka Town (豊中町)
Chosa Festival: A festival unique to this area of Japan. Giant portable shrines called Chosa are brought from all over to engage in “Chosa Battles” where 40+ men lift the giant shrine on their shoulders and toss it into the air among other amazing feats of strength and showmanship.

Yamamoto Town (山本町)
Temple: Botandera literally means “Peony Temple” and is a beautiful spot to visit in Yamamoto.

Other Interesting Things in Mitoyo City

Shishimai: “Lion Dances” are performed at shrines, temples and local residences and businesses to bless the rice harvest in the autumn.

Tokoji: A Zen temple in Takase Town. The nun who lives at this temple teaches tea ceremony and flower arrangement and is a respected member of the community. Nonetheless, she has a great sense of humor and a gentle teaching style.

Kyudo: Traditional Japanese Archery. Takuma has Kagawa’s largest public Kyudojo. Members practice seven days a week in the mornings and evenings. The dojo frequently hosts prefectural, regional and national competitions due to its large size and beauty. It is also one of the few kyudojos in Kagawa to have a long-distance shooting range.

Taiko: There is a taiko group that practices in Takase. If you wander east of Takase Station in the evening, just follow the sound of the drums to the practice. The members are friendly and passionate about taiko.

Great Restaurants

Splash Café (スプラッシュカフェ): located next to Hijidai Station in Toyonaka, the manager used to live in Boston and the restaurant makes quality french fries. The rest of the menu is excellent with a fusion of American and Japanese flavors. Of particular note is the dessert menu; everything on it is delicious. Another reason to frequent Splash Café is the great music. This is perhaps the only restaurant in Kagawa that feels like an American style café outside of Starbucks.

Splash Cafe
Image Unavailable
There are many popular restaurants in Mitoyo.

Cha Cha (茶茶): located in Yamamoto it is difficult to get to without a car. Cha Cha’s menu is geared towards more Japanese tastes, but is nevertheless excellent. They also offer shabushabu style dinners in the evenings.

Jiji (時々): a stylish izakaya located on the border between Toyonaka and Takase. Their menu changes seasonally but they always offer great drinks and desserts. It is about a 15 minute walk from Hijidai Station or Takase Station.

Fune (風音): the proprietor of this restaurant went abroad to study the art of pizza. Light fluffy crusts and high-quality ingredients accompany a great view and patio dining in nice weather. The restaurant is located half-way up the mountain neat Takase Station and is difficult to get to without a car, but would be work the hike if you chose to walk it. Warning: they are only open until 6:00pm.

Green India (グリーンインディア): authentic Indian food with giant portions. Green India has great set menus for low prices and amazing chocolate nan.

Café Knut (カフェ・クヌート): a small stylish café tucked behind the Nishioka Furniture Store between Mitoyo City and Kanonji City. The food is fusion and the desserts change seasonally.

Fuyu Tsubaki (冬椿): Located next to Motoyama Station, this small Japanese-style curry shop is run by a couple from Tokyo. There are only two kinds of curry on the menu, but they are both worth eating over and over again. All-natural wooden tables and great music also make this a favorite. Warning: they are only open Thursday-Sunday.

Pasta House Aldente (パスタハウス al dente): a popular Italian restaurant near Takase station that has been featured numerous time on Japanese TV according to locals. Aldente has an extensive menu with pastas, pizza, risotto, and the biggest salads you’ve ever seen. Warning: this place can get crowded, so a reservation is recommended.

Crepe de Girafe (クレープ ドゥ ジラフ): just down the road from Takase Station and next to Aldent, this is a tiny crepe shop themed to… well, giraffes. It is a tastily place to stop and grab something sweet and is popular with the High School Students in the area.

Café de Flots: located in Nio, this restaurant has a mostly Japanese menu and tasty desserts. This café also has a prime view of the sunset over the Seto Inland Sea.

Learning Japanese

If you want to practice Japanese, there is a free Japanese class in Takase on Sundays. For the exact time and place, email the Mitoyo City International Exchange Center at pj.awagak.oyotim.ytic|uyruokiasukok#pj.awagak.oyotim.ytic|uyruokiasukok or call them at 0875-56-5121. Almost all of the staff members speak English. This class is a great place to meet people from all over the world.

Toru Sone is a private tutor from Nio. He speaks perfect English and customeizes his lessons to his students’ levels and learning styles. Ask a local JET for his home phone number.

Socializing

To find out what’s happening in Mitoyo City and Kagawa, your best bet is to join two Facebook groups: the Kagawa International Social Scene (KISS) and the AJET Block 8 Group. The later one also has a lot of official information for JETs, but all of the prefectures in Shikoku post events on there so it’s a great place to see what’s happening on the island.

It’s also a good idea to contact the Mitoyo City International Exchange Association. They hold many events throughout the year such as tours, parties and cooking classes. You can either participate as a guest or volunteer to help at one of the events. Contact them at pj.awagak.oyotim.ytic|uyruokiasukok#pj.awagak.oyotim.ytic|uyruokiasukok or call them at 0875-56-5121.

Landmarks and Useful Locations

Motoyama Temple (本山寺) is perhaps the most notable landmark in Mitoyo City. It is a destination on the 88 Temples Pilgrimage and features a wonderful five-storied pagoda. The temple grounds were recently repaired and remodeled, so the site is now especially beautiful.

Motoyama Temple
Image Unavailable
One of the stops on the Shikoku 88 Henro.

Route 11 (11号線) is the main road that goes through Mitoyo City. Many business are located along this major thoroughfare.

YouMe Town (ゆめタウン) is the local mall. It has a grocery store, international foods store, 100yen shop, book store, sewing/craft store, pharmacy, electronics store, clothing stores, food court, game center, etc. It is also a major landmark along Route 11. The bus to Osaka stops in front of YouMe Town.

Shippo-san (七宝山) is the mountain that separates Nio from the rest of Mitoyo City. There is a great shrine at the top that can be reached by car and/or hiking.

Shiundeyama (紫雲出山) is the mountain on the long peninsula extending from the west side of Mitoyo City. In addition to having amazing views of the Seto Inland Sea, it also has spectacular cherry blossoms in the spring and hydrangeas in the summer. Shiundeyama is a part of the legend of Urashimataro. The mountain’s name means “Purple Smoke Coming Out Mountain,” a reference to the purple smoke that was released from the box that Urashimataro opened.

Awashima (粟島) is an island accessible by ferry from Takuma’s Suda Harbor. The island has nice, easy hikes and friendly locals. On summer nights you can swim with phosphorescent algae that glows when you move your hands in the water.

Fudo no Taki (不動の滝) Country Park is a wonderful park at the foot of Shippo-san. It has a community center, put-put golf, children’s playground, cherry blossom trees and - of course - a waterfall.

Marine Wave (マリンウェーブ) is located in Takuma and is the location of the Mitoyo City International Exchange Association and many of their events. It houses the area’s largest performance hall where you can see musical performances of various types throughout the year.

Sea Max (シーマックス) is a local gym offering a variety of classes, a swimming pool, an onsen and the latest exercise equipment.

The Toyonaka Training Center is a community-run gym that only costs 100 yen per visit. You won’t find many fancy pieces of equipment here, but you will find budget-conscious locals who are serious about being healthy.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License